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Hartselle Enquirer

Schools show enrollment increases

By Staff
Clif Knight, Hartselle Enquirer
The number of students enrolled in Hartselle City Schools increased from 3,067 on the first day (Aug. 9) to 3,144 on the first day after Labor Day (Sept. 4). The increase of 77 students affected the city's five public schools as follows: Hartselle High, up 35; Hartselle Junior High, up 14; Crestline Elementary, up 21; F.E. Burleson Elementary, up 13; and Barkley Bridge Elementary, down six.
The change in enrollment had no immediate adverse effect such as requiring additional classes and teachers, according Dr. Mike Reed, superintendent, because plans for a new school year are built around year-end enrollment figures, not year-beginning figures.
What it did do, however, was keep the school system under a wakeup call that stems from steady enrollment gains over the past six or seven years, Reed said.
"We're all aware of the building activity that's taking place in Hartselle now. With each new house, you can count on a gain of 2.1 children. What that means to us is that we can expect student enrollment to continue to grow in the future," he said. "As I told Kiwanis Club members recently, we're elbow to elbow now. If things don't break soon we may have to go back to portable classrooms.
"Some of our classrooms are fast approaching the maximum number of students allowed by the State Department of Education. I observed a fifth grade class this morning (Sept. 13) with 25 students. That's knocking on the door of having too many."
Of the 586 out-of-district students attending schools in Hartselle, 160 are enrolled at Hartselle High. All are students who enrolled at lower grade levels.
"We have not accepted any out-of-district students at the high school for the past three years because we didn't have room for them," Reed said.
"We are already getting students in our system from BRAC relocations." Reed said, "One of the first things parents with school-age children do now when they are getting ready to relocate to another part of the country is to go on the internet and compare school systems. We're fortunate to have a great school system that is one of the reason newcomers locate here. I expect this trend to grow in the months and years ahead."

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